By the most conservative estimate, BP’s Gulf of Mexico disaster has already spilled nearly twice as much oil as the Exxon Valdez. The impact of the 1989 environmental and commercial catastrophe is still being felt in Alaska more than 20 years later. The gulf spill could already be five times as big as Valdez.
Even using the most conservative estimate, that means the leak has grown to nearly 19 million gallons, surpassing the size of the 1989 Exxon Valdez disaster, which at about 11 million gallons had been the nation’s worst spill. Under the highest estimate, nearly 39 million gallons may have spilled.
U.S. Geological Survey Director Marcia McNutt said two different teams of scientists calculated that the well has been spewing between 504,000 and more than 1 million gallons a day.